After more than a year of Russian military action in Syria, Russia is escalating its airstrikes in an unprecedented way. Using incendiary explosives and bunker busting bombs, the Russians are increasing collateral damage and civilian casualties in Aleppo, despite widespread denunciation from the international community, namely, the United States. The United States has even threatened to end Syrian peace talks with Russia and has stated that they will refuse to cooperate with Russian efforts to combat ISIS if they persist with this inhumane and systematic bombing of Aleppo. However, they fail to realize that the U.S. was the first to use such tactics in the modern era. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were displays of overwhelming force that dismayed the Japanese to such a degree that they agreed to surrender, thus ending the war quickly, and saving thousands of lives, both American and Japanese. Russia is hoping to end the war in Syria quickly, as it has dragged on far too long. They are hoping that increased destruction and death immediately will result in decreased destruction and death in the future. They are gambling that this last offensive will break the backs of the rebels, and that they will either surrender, or join the extremists, turning the war in Syria from a multi-sided affair to a traditional two-sided war. By joining the extremists, the rebels will lose the international support and aid that they are receiving, and Russia will be able to quickly crush the extremists as well.
Kerry’s threat to stop negotiating with Russia is absolutely absurd. Russia doesn’t want a ceasefire. They have been leading on the international community for over a year to avoid sanctions, but if they wanted to stop fighting, they could pull out any time. Secondly, his threat to not cooperate with Russian efforts to combat ISIS is absolutely weightless. ISIS is a bigger threat to the United States than to Russia, so it may end up hurting the United States if they decide to stop attacking ISIS in the most effective way. Also, Russia has done a superb job of fighting ISIS on its own. Not to mention, the entire international community is focused on fighting ISIS, so if Russia succeeds in making the Syrian war a two sided affair, they will not lack in partners that will help them fight the extremists. In fact, Kerry’s statements are just making the United States look silly. If the United States really cared for peace, why are they pursuing tactics that will only prolong the war? If the United States really cares that the rebels overthrow Bassad, why don’t they interfere? If not with troops, at least with a no fly zone? It seems that the policies of the United States are only increasing the instability in the region.